Finding The Right Way To Motivate Employees


This question comes up on so many of our programmes…how do you get employees to come to work motivated?

There are basically three main ways to motivate people in general and employees specifically. They are fear, incentives and growth. It’s important to get a hold on each of these so let’s examine them:


This is not good. It isn’t right and it doesn’t work well in the long run and isn’t good for the overall health of the organisation. Yet, still there are people who use it. They make blatant or veiled threats in order to get people to work. There is a better way.


John Maxwell says that “What gets rewarded, gets done.” This is the technique that says, “If you do this, then you will get this.”  Yet eventually, most people come to the end of being driven by incentive. This is because most people are innately driven by something even deeper.


Do you ever wonder how the personal growth industry has gotten so huge? It is because it deals with something that lies deep within each person. Every person has within them a desire to get better.

Some people are more in tune with that desire than others, but each person has it, and it can a great motivating factor.

First, here is how it doesn’t work. You don’t say “If you do this, then I will give you a personal growth opportunity.” That is still incentive.

Here is how it does work: You simply make it a core value of your business or organisation that management will give regular opportunity for personal and professional growth to all members of the team.

I say both personal and professional growth very purposely. There will always be the opportunity and need for professional growth, and the employees expect that. They may or may not appreciate it though.

However, personal growth opportunities, given with no strings attached, will be appreciated, and rewarded with ultra-motivated employees. Here are some simple ideas:

A “Department Library” stocked with books and CD’s and DVDs

A Financial Resources section.

Any kind of Development Seminar that will benefit the employee.

Days off to pursue personal development opportunities.

You have to take this seriously, or you will get a team of employees who simply go through the motions. Invest in your employee’s personal growth and they will reward you with high motivation!

Many thanks

Mark Williams

Head of Training

MTD Training   | Image courtesy by Stuart Miles of FreeDigitalPhotos.Net

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Updated on: 24 October, 2012

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